That is a question with a different answer for everyone who asks it.
I prefer the mini, but your son may like the bigger screen. I prefer the wifi version and use my phone as a hotspot if needed, but others may like the cellular version. I prefer not to have an unneeded line access fee on my account. I like enough memory to have 5-10 movies on my device while others may not. See the problem with asking other people this question???
I Have all the same preferences as rschooner.
I Will ad this, if it sways your choice at all. A lot of colleges use ipad as a classroom tool.
I agree as well. I love my mini, and find my wife's ipad cumbersome. I'd love to get her to transition to a mini. But it's personal preference. Moral? Take him to a store and let him test drive the devices.